Who has gone farthest? for I would go farther,
And who has been just? for I would be the most just person of the
And who most cautious? for I would be more cautious,
And who has been happiest? O I think it is I – – I think no one was ever
happier than I,
And who has lavish’d all? for I lavish constantly the best I have,
And who proudest? for I think I have reason to be the proudest son
alive–for I am the son of the brawny and tall-topt city,
And who has been bold and true? for I would be the boldest and truest
being of the universe,
And who benevolent? for I would show more benevolence than all the
And who has receiv’d the love of the most friends?
for I know what it is to receive the passionate love of many friends,
And who possesses a perfect and enamour’d body? for I do not believe
any one possesses a more perfect or enamour’d body than mine,
And who thinks the amplest thoughts? for I would surround those
And who has made hymns fit for the earth? for I am mad with
devouring ecstasy to make joyous hymns for the whole earth.
Walt Whitman was born in Huntington, New York, NY, USA, on May 31, 1819. He is best known for Leaves of Grass, a prodigious collection of poetry that he continually revised for most of his life. Whitman died in 1892.